Dudley Hippodrome survey shows 89% of respondents want the theatre they own NOT to be destroyed by Dudley Council

At severe risk Dudley Hippodrome could be a magnet for entertainment, employment, jobs and prosperity and tourism in the area – any Council that wouldn’t want that is not competent in serving its constituents.

Dudley Hippodrome is a unique and irreplaceable Art Deco theatre at severe risk of destruction by its own Council to make way for a handful of prefabricated college buildings which could be built anywhere in the area and the need for which is increasingly in doubt.

With the Council ignoring its existence, as well as the vociferous and smart supporters group which has constantly held the Council up to public shame for their lack of care around this asset that the people own, on land gifted to the people, the Council have trampled across all normal modes of behaviour and demonstrated not only a lack of competence but also no belief in the future of their town. A failed city bid behind them, one might think that they would have second thoughts – notably that the lack of a professional theatre is what likely lost them the bid.

So for any sort of initiative, one must ignore the Council and look to the active and engaged supporters and friends group who have been doing fantastic work to keep the idea of the theatre’s survival alive in the hearts of those who see the theatre as a key to prosperity, employment and improved wellbeing in the area.

Their latest initiative was to commission a survey by an independent market research group, Oakham Research, around the future of the Hippodrome and what others would like to see it used for.

1,094 surveys were received by the deadline, and the findings from the responses make interesting reading.

You’ll find the main points in these screengrabs below:

There’ve been one or two gripes (perhaps by people who may be in line to benefit from the £5 million of taxpayers money earmarked for its destruction) that this survey is very pro-Hippodrome in its phrasing.

My answer – and why not? This will help to balance out the very anti-Hippodrome survey that the Council put out which barely mentioned the Hippodrome, and was completed by massively smaller numbers than participated in this new Hippodrome – initiated survey.

What this work has made clear is that there is an under-reported appetite for a purpose-built theatre of a professional standard, not the small, unsatisfactory and unraked halls found locally.

Any Council that wilfully destroys the area’s biggest cultural asset- especially the last professional theatre in this already culturally deprived area (as highlighted by the Arts Council) – will have a lot to answer for if the wreckers ball ever does touch our Hippodrome. Dudley Council, take note and change course – before you become the laughing stock of the UK.

2 Replies to “Dudley Hippodrome survey shows 89% of respondents want the theatre they own NOT to be destroyed by Dudley Council”

    1. Thanks for your comment, Kevin. Which is all the more reason for all of us to fight for what is right, yes?
      Enjoy your smart new kitchen!

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